Florida Tech Panthers Upset No. 17 Mocs 3-1
By Florida Tech // November 11, 2015
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – The Clemente Center was a hostile and loud environment Tuesday night as fans and students packed the house for Greek Night to watch their Florida Tech volleyball team take on Sunshine State Conference foe Florida Southern.
With the crowd behind them, the Panthers struck first and struck often against the Mocs, silencing the No. 17-ranked team in the nation 3-1 (25-23, 23-25, 25-21, 25-22).
The victory is the first over a ranked opponent since 2010, when the Panthers defeated No. 22 Flagler. This also marks FIT’s first win over a Top 20 opponent since knocking off No. 10 Eckerd in 2005.
Kim Juriga paced FIT with 15 kills, tying her season-high, on a match-high .542 attack percentage. The senior also finished with three blocks and two digs in the victory.
Also having a strong game at the net was Alea Hamm who notched nine kills to go along with her four blocks. Becca Bower led all players with a match and season-high 24 digs and four assists.
The Panthers received major contributions from several freshmen in the upset win.
Kiersten Rosa had one of her best performances in her young career, finishing with a season-high seven kills, 30 assists and eight digs. Fellow rookies, Olivia Hersey and Kelly Germain, tallied six and four kills, respectively.
Hersey also tied a match-high with four blocks.
FIT outhit the Mocs on the night, .260-to-.218, and registered more blocks 9-to-5 in the victory. FSC was also forced into 27 attack errors by the Panthers’ relentless defensive effort at the net.
The Mocs struggled on their serve as well, totaling 12 errors on the night.
Leading FSC was Anna Tovo who recorded a match-high 22 kills, while Kayshia Brady pounded 14 kills in the match. The team’s setter Bethany Besancenez finished with a match-high 58 assists, Kendall Marotti added a double-double on 12 kills and 15 digs.
The Panthers are up against another SSC and national power, when they travel to Tampa, Florida on Thursday to face the No. 10 Spartans at 7 p.m. ET at the Bob Martinez Athletics Center.
FIT was defeated 3-1 by then-No. 2 Tampa earlier this season on Oct. 10 in Melbourne.
Fans can access live coverage of the Panthers’ match at FloridaTechSports.com.